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Fantasy Baseball Weekly Planner: Week 6 (2021)

by Josh Shepardson | @BChad50 | Featured Writer
May 7, 2021

Next week, three teams sit at the bottom of the heap with five games scheduled. All three teams are featured in the notable matchups section. Nine are at the other end of the spectrum with seven games. Although, the Chicago White Sox and Kansas City Royals reach a seven-game week with a doubleheader on Friday. As a reminder, doubleheader games are seven innings again this year, making their seven-game week a pinch less valuable than the other seven-game weeks. A few teams with the most favorable seven-game weeks are included in this space, and even a few teams with six games on the docket get the nod.

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Notable Matchups

Chicago Cubs @ CLE (2), @ DET (3)
The Cubs will have the services of a designated hitter for all five of their games next week. That’s the good news. The bad news is that it’s a five-game week, and one of those games is against reigning American League Cy Young Award Winner Shane Bieber.

Los Angeles Dodgers vs. SEA (2), vs. MIA (3)
The top hitters for the Dodgers are lineup mainstays regardless of the number of games scheduled, ballparks they’re playing in, and pitching matchups. Their fringe fantasy options are dinged significantly this week with five games at their pitcher-friendly home ballpark and some challenging pitching matchups. According to our ballpark factors, Dodger Stadium has the third-lowest park factor for runs (0.890).

New York Mets vs. BAL (2), @ TB (3)
The Mets will be able to utilize a designated hitter for three games in Tampa Bay next week. Still, their offense is already without key contributors on the injured list, namely Brandon Nimmo and J.D. Davis. Toss in facing front-line starters John Means and Tyler Glasnow, as well as eye-catching rookie Shane McClanahan, and it’s not an ideal layout for the Mets’ hitters.

San Diego Padres @ COL (3), vs. STL (3)
The Padres are one of two teams visiting Coors Field next week. Their pitching matchups are non-threatening too. The outlook is good for San Diego’s hitters next week.

Toronto Blue Jays @ ATL (3), vs. PHI (3)
The Blue Jays will have a pitcher in the lineup instead of a designated hitter for three games in Atlanta to open next week, but their week is capped off with three contests at their hitter-friendly temporary home in Dunedin. In Dunedin, Florida, TD Ballpark has the highest park factor for runs and second-highest for homers, per ESPN’s park factors. Speaking of their temporary home, the gravy train will run dry soon, as the Blue Jays will move back to Sahlen Field in Buffalo on June 1. According to ESPN’s ballpark factors, Sahlen Field increased runs (1.096), but it significantly decreased homers (0.760).

Boston Red Sox @ BAL (1), vs. OAK (3), vs. LAA (3)
Everything comes up roses for the Red Sox next week. They play seven games, the pitching matchups are soft, and they’re all in hitter-friendly venues. At least five of their seven games will be against righties, which is especially noteworthy for left-handed hitters Alex Verdugo and Rafael Devers.

Cincinnati Reds @ PIT (3), @ COL (4)
The Reds open the week with three games at pitcher-friendly PNC Park, but that’s more than offset by four games at MLB’s premier hitting venue, Coors Field. Their pitching matchups are dreamy, too, and heavily right-handed leaning with at least six righties on the docket. Jesse Winker‘s going to feast, and Tyler Naquin could provide gamers who overspent FAAB on him weeks ago with a big showing next week.

Colorado Rockies vs. SD (3), vs. CIN (4)
Next week is why you roster Rockies’ hitters. They’re home for seven games. Fire them up.

Hitter Notes

Juan Soto (WAS)
Soto was activated from the injured list on Tuesday, but he’s yet to start a game. He’s been limited to pinch-hitting duties. As soon as he can play the field, gamers should get him back into their lineups. Until then, gamers are stuck in the unenviable position of being unable to stash him in an IL spot and start him.

Christian Yelich (MIL)
Yelich’s return from the injured list was short-lived, lasting only one day. The outfielder’s back is once again the culprit for the injured list stint, and he’s seeking answers, as an MRI scan showed no structural damage. Without a clear picture of what’s causing his back problems, a timeline for his return is unknown.

Luis Robert (CHW)
The White Sox have already been without Eloy Jimenez, and now they’ll be without Robert for at least three or four months with a torn hip flexor. If he’s on your roster and you have an open IL spot, there’s no harm in stashing him for now. However, in re-draft leagues, gamers can cut him if their IL is full.

Anthony Rendon (LAA)
Rendon suffered a knee contusion as a result of fouling a ball off of himself earlier this week. He’s on the IL now, and it was backdated to Tuesday, making him eligible to return as early as May 14. In leagues with weekly lineup changes, a possible late-week return at the earliest isn’t grounds for starting him.

Pitcher Notes

Dinelson Lamet (SD)
Lamet returned from the injured list on Tuesday, spinning two scoreless innings. He’s reportedly feeling healthy, but his fastball velocity was notably down a few ticks from 2020. There’s most likely not a robust trade market for his services in fantasy baseball, so gamers should hold and hope for the best.

Dustin May (LAD)
May’s 2020 campaign is over. He’s set to undergo season-ending Tommy John surgery. The Dodgers’ rotation depth will be put to the test. David Price and Tony Gonsolin are also on the injured list, but the latter’s in the process of being built up to start. Gonsolin’s a top-notch candidate to add and stash.

Jacob deGrom (NYM)
Carlos Carrasco (NYM)
Noah Syndergaard (NYM)
The Mets, fans of theirs, and fantasy gamers rostering deGrom were dealt a scare when he was scratched from his start Tuesday. All noted parties can let out a sigh of relief, as a scan showed inflammation of the latissimus dorsi muscle, and he could return to the mound as soon as Sunday.

The good news doesn’t end there. More reinforcements are on the mend and should be back by late May or the middle of June. Carrasco was surprisingly moved to the 60-day IL, but he threw a simulated game on Tuesday, and he’ll begin a minor-league rehab assignment this weekend.

Syndergaard’s progressing, and he tossed two innings in a simulated game on Tuesday.

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Josh Shepardson is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Josh, check out his archive and follow him @BChad50.